Rivalries…Do they exist for the Rockies?
I bring up this question in the fact that this past weekend began the best rivalry in Major League Baseball, the Red Sox and Yankees. Sure there are other rivalries, but none like these two. I say this for one because this rivalry exists within the same division and not created necessarily by interleague scheduling like the White Sox vs Cubs, Giants and A’s, Mets and Yankees.
So as the question in the title begs, do the Rockies have a rival team? To answer that question, I would have to say no. It’s my belief that major league baseball when they awarded expansion franchises to Denver and to Phoeniz they did so in hopes of creating a rivalry that in all honesty isnt really there. Sure alot of Rockies fans dislike the Diamondbacks, maybe mostly due to the fact that they are the closest team to Denver and they are in the same division, but I would hesitate to refer to it as a rivalry, more like a bad taste in your mouth more than anything. There’s very little real history between the two teams, surely very little, if any bad history. There was a chance for growth in the still budding rivalry between the Rockies and D’backs in the playoffs of the 2007 season, but it has still yet to really take off from that. The same could be said about the Padres in the same 2007 season of the wildcard play-in game and Holliday’s controversial play at home plate to win the game. Still nothing has come of it since.
If the NL West were more competitve then the hatred of other teams within the division and possiblities for rivalries would certainly be greater. But competitive isn’t a word that I’d use to describe the NL West.
I don’t figure the Rockies will ever have a true rivalry with any other team, but anything is possible. The D’backs are probably our best shot at having one. It will never be of the Red Sox and Yankees level, but I’d settle for if it grew over time to the level of Cubs vs Cardinals. Rivalries are built by what happens on the field, in the media and also by the fans. Just take a look at the Broncos and their rivalries with the Raiders, Chargers and Chiefs. One thing will need to happen first and that is the Rockies will have to begin to play like they want to win a division, by that I’m meaning they have to play a hard-nosed, exciting, take no prisoners aggressive style of baseball that will get fans in the seats, create passion for the Rockies and make other teams and the media take notice. And currently under manager Clint Hurdle that just isn’t happening.